Russian Orthodox Liturgical Resources

Liturgical Handbook
of the Practices of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad
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Handbook of Liturgical Practice of the Russian Church Abroad
Liturgical Question:
In preparing the Lamb for the Presanctified Liturgy (i.e. at the Liturgy of St Basil on the preceding Sunday in Great Lent), in what manner is the Lamb to be intincted with the Blood?
Handbook Category: Lenten Services (index)

When multiple Lambs are consecrated at the Divine Liturgies during Great Lent, with one or more to be reserved for celebrations of the Presanctified Liturgy over the lenten weekdays ahead, those Lambs which are to be reserved are to be intincted with the Precious Blood in the following manner (prior to the communion of the clergy):

  • Following the addition of a small amount of hot water to the Chalice at the usual time (in far lesser quantity than normal), the Lamb that is to be intincted is taken in the Priest’s left hand, the spoon in his right. Holding the Lamb over the Chalice, he uses the spoon to intinct the Lamb first on its base, then on the four sides; in each case he spoons the Precious Blood onto the Lamb in cross-wise fashion, intincting enough of it into the Lamb that when, in due course, it is broken and distributed for the faithful during the Presanctified Liturgy, there will be Blood together with the Body; but taking care not to soak-through or over-intinct the Lamb.
    • Under absolutely no circumstances is the Lamb to be intincted by dipping it into the Chalice, a practice that is categorically forbidden in our Diocese. It is always intincted as described above. (See illustrative photographs, below.)

An example of a Lamb that has been improperly intincted by dipping the Lamb in the chalice. This must never be done.

A photograph showing a Lamb that has been correctly intincted. Note the cross-wise way in which the Blood was intincted into the Body by use of the spoon.

  • One the Lamb has been intincted adequately on the base and four sides (the top is never intincted), it is lain reverentially, upside-down, in the protective box that will remain on the Holy Table to protect it until the Presanctified Liturgy.
  • After the Lamb (or multiple Lambs) have been intincted, the Priest adds remaining hot water to the Chalice, and then continues with the division of the main Lamb of the present service, first for the communion of the clergy and then of the faithful, in the usual way.

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